Until well into my 50’s, I never realized the role of “anticipation” in my life. Most recently, it reared its predictable but ugly head in my relationship with a man. Now, this guy was not the King of Follow-Through, but that is another blog topic. Maybe because he was in my life to bring this awareness to me, I should be grateful, and on a good day, I am.
I am not sure when I began to notice it… the rushing around, striving to get “there”…wherever the Hell that is…and feeling a strange kind of anxiety that seemed my constant companion. I couldn’t explain it, but later realized it kept me in the future. Maybe for me, the future felt more safe, exciting, mysterious or fun than what was right before me. Thank God, I realized how much I was missing by never living in the present. Life is ours only second by second and when we cannot see that, its joy passes us by. There is NO anxiety in the moment, only when we live in the past or the future.
I call it “living in 9-1-1”. How can you get from waiting for the boot to drop, to a place of peace? There are many ways, but for right now try this… Next time you are washing the dishes or taking a shower and you feel your mind whirring and busily filling in the spaces of time, pay attention to simply feeling the water, moving your hands on the smooth surface of a plate or your body, feel your feet safely on the floor, and say to yourself, “This is not 9-1-1 and I have all that I need.”
Not one thing about the holidays is ever in the spirit of 9-1-1. A single thought of love for family and friends, remembering someone who makes you smile, recalling how precious life is even if you have to wash dishes…that is living your life.